What is the best method for someone living in the U.S. to purchase both an Oyster Card and a Two Together Rail Card?
I've never bought any from the USA but the site says you need to have a UK address for the Two Together Card and the Oyster Card you can buy it online and have it mailed to you in the USA.
Buy both once you have arrived.
Buy when you get there.
if you need to buy train tickets from the US you buy online indicating you have the railcard - but then you buy the card in the UK at a station before your train journey
as others say also buy the Oyster in London
yup - reserve tickets on the trains using the discount and buy both the Two Together card and Oyster card in England. Just be sure that you have bought and have in hand the Two Together Railcard before you board a train on which you have claimed the discount.
Thank you all for your input. We will wait and purchase after we arrive in London.
We bought both the Oyster and the Two Together Rail card when we arrived. We had limited time to complete the rail card tranasaction so tried to expedite where possible. We printed off the Two Together application form and had it in hand. We brought passport photos from home. The agent trimmed our photos to fit the card and we were set. We bought the Oyster card later at a kiosk. There was a rep stationed at the kiosk to assist...we were told to look for the guy in the Hi Vi....turns out that means High Visibilty vest...day glow chartreuse, and he was right there.
Denny, thanks for the great information. One question: did you purchase both of the cards at Heathrow?
You can get the Oyster Card at Heathrow Underground Station but the Two Together Railcard is a National Rail Railcard and only available from National Rail (with the crow's feet logo) stations. There is no National Rail station at Heathrow - Heathrow Express is owned by the airport and is not a National Rail outfit.
Get the Two Together Railcard at a major London station. Where will you be staying and I will tell you the nearest. You do know that the railcard does nothing for your Underground rides, right?
We'll be staying close to Paddington, so I assume we will be able to purchase the Two Together card there.
We got the Two Together at St Pancras and the Oyster days later at Victoria, only because that's where our plans put us coming and going. Nigel is the pro. We had purchased all tickets in advance, online, as if we already had the Two Together card. One thing....and I think I have this correct...you can only obtain a refund from a kiosk at the end of your Oyster usage if the balance is under £10. We miscalculated and had too much left, couldn't get to a staffed desk that evening. We carried home loaded Oysters rather than speed between terminals at 6am searching for a refund. (I believe an agent explained our terminal had no such facility, another did, but honestly, at that point, I knew we would eat the loss and just stopped listening...last night fatigue). Have a great trip.
The only Visitor Centre at Heathrow for refunds is situated in the Heathrow Terminals 2 & 3 and that doesn't open until 07:30.
You can get a refund by post but it is fairly useless since it will be a cheque in sterling or credit to a UK bank account.
Thanks again everyone for your prompt and helpful replies.